Ex-Microsoft Employee: Free Software Will Kill Microsoft

IconKeith Curtis worked at Microsoft for 11 years, coding on Windows, Office, and at Microsoft's research department, before leaving the Redmond giant. Call it a revelation, call it giving in to the devil's temptations, but he's now a complete open source and Linux advocate, and in his new book, "After the Software Wars", he explains why open source will prevail against Microsoft's proprietary model.

Curtis never actually used Linux until 2004, when he left Microsoft. Over the years, he turned into a Linux advocate, and now claims that thanks to the proprietary software model, we are living in "the dark ages of computing." This is what is scientifically known as doing a complete 180 (no, not a 360).

In an interview with CIO, he explains why the open source model will ultimately lead to Microsoft's demise. First, he argues that the open source model leads to better code. He points to Firefox and the Linux kernel as examples of open source delivering greater quality than the proprietary model. Secondly, he also states that open source undermines Microsoft's profit margins.

He further argues that while open source may not have made tremendous gains just yet in the desktop market, it is doing very well in other segments of the computing market. "Google has hundreds of thousands of machines running Linux," he explains, "Free software is well on its way to conquering the small and the large, and the remaining challenge is the desktop in the middle."

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original content posted by Thom Holwerda on Fri 22nd May 2009 13:58 UTC, submitted by shaneco